Family: Stepped-On Moms

It can be rougher than many new stepmothers think to fit into a family that's already in progress

When Valerie Hermes got married two years ago to James, a divorced man with three children, her life-style changed dramatically. Before you could say "sport utility vehicle," the 29-year-old Dallas market researcher had moved to the suburbs and thrown herself into instant parenthood. Yet despite the many hours she has spent caring for her stepchildren, Hermes says they are often angry at her. "I'm there, and I'm doing all these mother things," she says. "I'm making their lunch, and I'm helping them with their homework, and I'm doing all of this stuff every day through the week, and I feel like...

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